Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

The faith-based initiative at risk?

Being otherwise occupied, I missed this article last week (hat tip to Howard Friedman through Jordan Ballor). The usual secularist subjects want to strip the affirmation of religious hiring rights from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Act renewal. Their argument is the old "no government funding of religious discrimination" canard, with which I dealt many moons ago here. The short version of my argument is that we’re not funding religious discrimination, we’re supporting religious freedom in carrying out programs that work. We shouldn’t fund programs because they’e religious, but because they work. We shouldn’t refuse to fund programs that are religious if they work, assuming that a wide range of alternatives is available (and also funded). This isn’t a violation of the First Amendment.

I have more to say about these matters in a review forthcoming this summer in the CRB.

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